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School District Leave Policies, Teacher Absenteeism, and Student Achievement

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  • Ronald G. Ehrenberg
  • Randy A. Ehrenberg
  • Daniel I. Rees
  • Eric L. Ehrenberg

Abstract

In an effort to reduce salary costs, many school districts have begun to offer teachers financial incentives to retire early. Often, however, these districts have limits on the number of cumulated unused sick leave days that teachers may receive cash payments, credits toward future health insurance, or retirement credits for, at retirement. Thus, one might expect that in addition to stimulating early retirement, early retirement incentive programs may interact with sick leave provisions and provide an unintended incentive for increased teacher absenteeism. To the extent that less learning occurs when regular teachers are absent and student motivation to attend school is also reduced, student academic performance may suffer. This surely would be an unintended side effect of these policies. To address these issues, this paper, which is based on an extensive data collection effort by the authors, presents an econometric analyses of variations in teacher and student absenteeism across the over 700 school districts in New York State in 1986-87 and of how such variations influence student test score performance.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 2874.

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Date of creation: Sep 1991
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Publication status: published as The Journal of Human Resources, Vol. 26, No. 1, pp. 72-105, (Winter 1991).
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:2874

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  1. Levin, Henry M. & Tsang, Mun C., 1987. "The economics of student time," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 6(4), pages 357-364, August.
  2. Chelius, James R., 1981. "Understanding absenteeism: The potential contribution of economic theory," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 9(4), pages 409-418, December.
  3. Summers, Anita A & Wolfe, Barbara L, 1977. "Do Schools Make a Difference?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 67(4), pages 639-52, September.
  4. Kiesling, Herbert J., 1984. "Assignment practices and the relationship of instructional time to the reading performance of elementary school children," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 341-350, August.
  5. Allen, Steven G, 1981. "An Empirical Model of Work Attendance," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 63(1), pages 77-87, February.
  6. Steven G. Allen, 1983. "How Much Does Absenteeism Cost?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 18(3), pages 379-393.
  7. Stephen L. Jacobson, 1989. "The Effects of Pay Incentives on Teacher Absenteeism," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 24(2), pages 280-286.
  8. Ronald G. Ehrenberg & Ronald A. Ehrenberg & Richard P. Chaykowski, 1988. "Determinants of the compensation and mobility of school superintendents," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 41(3), pages 386-401, April.
  9. Link, Charles R. & Mulligan, James G., 1986. "The merits of a longer school day," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 5(4), pages 373-381, August.
  10. Steven G. Allen, 1984. "Trade unions, absenteeism, and exit-voice," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 37(3), pages 331-345, April.
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Cited by:
  1. Marte Rønning, 2012. "The effect of working conditions on teachers’sickness absence," Discussion Papers, Research Department of Statistics Norway 684, Research Department of Statistics Norway.
  2. Stefan Dercon, 2004. "Teacher Shocks and Student Learning: Evidence from Zambia," Economics Series Working Papers, University of Oxford, Department of Economics WPS/2004-26, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  3. Rowena A. Pecchenino & Patricia S. Pollard, 2000. "Dependent children and aged parents: funding education and social security in an aging economy," Working Papers, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis 1995-001, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  4. Ramon Moreno & Sun Bae Kim, 1993. "Money, interest rates and economic activity: stylized facts for Japan," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, pages 12-24.
  5. Monazza Aslam, 2003. "The Determinants of Student Achievement in Government and Private Schools in Pakistan," The Pakistan Development Review, Pakistan Institute of Development Economics, Pakistan Institute of Development Economics, vol. 42(4), pages 841-876.
  6. Herrmann, Mariesa A. & Rockoff, Jonah E., 2013. "Do menstrual problems explain gender gaps in absenteeism and earnings?," Labour Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 12-22.
  7. Duncan Chaplin & Martha Bleeker & Kevin Booker, 2010. "Roads to Success: Estimated Impacts of an Education and Career Planning Program During Middle School," Mathematica Policy Research Reports, Mathematica Policy Research 6556, Mathematica Policy Research.
  8. Priscilla Tavares & Rafael Camelo & Paula Kasmirski, 2009. "A falta faz falta? Um estudo sobre o absenteísmo dos professores da rede estadual paulista de ensino e seus efeitos sobre o desempenho escolar," Working Papers, Universidade de São Paulo, Faculdade de Economia, Administração e Contabilidade de Ribeirão Preto 09_08, Universidade de São Paulo, Faculdade de Economia, Administração e Contabilidade de Ribeirão Preto.
  9. Nazmul Chaudhury & Jeffrey Hammer & Michael Kremer & Karthik Muralidharan & F. Halsey Rogers, 2006. "Missing in Action: Teacher and Health Worker Absence in Developing Countries," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 20(1), pages 91-116, Winter.
  10. Duncan Chaplin & Martha Bleeker & Claire Smither, 2009. "Rigorous Evaluation of Roads to Success: Design Report," Mathematica Policy Research Reports, Mathematica Policy Research 6273, Mathematica Policy Research.
  11. Charles T. Clotfelter & Helen F. Ladd & Jacob L. Vigdor, 2007. "Are Teacher Absences Worth Worrying About in the U.S.?," NBER Working Papers 13648, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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